Wind and slope push Medio Fire further south

Medio Fire – August 22, 2020 Daily Update

Acres: Approximately 1530 acres Start Date: August 17, 2020
Cause: Unknown

Containment: 5%

Total personnel: 135

Location: Rio en Medio Trail, Española Ranger District, Santa Fe National Forest

Fuels: Dry mixed conifer, ponderosa pine

Highlights: The Medio Fire crossed the drainage over the Rio en Medio Trail yesterday. Pushed by northern winds and steep slopes, the fire is now moving further towards the south. Crews are working on a combination of direct and indirect perimeter control, including handline construction surrounding tribal trust lands and private inholdings along Forest Road (FR) 102.

Community Meeting: The Incident Management Team hosted the first virtual community meeting yesterday evening, with over 280 participants viewing the live video. A recording of the meeting is now available at No account is required to view the video. The next virtual community meeting will be held tonight at 6:00 pm on the Santa Fe National Forest’s Facebook page. We will monitor online Facebook questions during the meeting, or you can email us your questions in advance at A recording will be posted immediately following the live meeting.

Operations: Resources on scene include the Mt. Taylor Hotshots, Smokey Bear Hotshots, Silver City Hotshots, Red River Fire Chasers, two engines, a Type 3 helicopter, two National Guard Blackhawk helicopters, and a fixed-wing aircraft. As the fire headed south across the Rio en Medio drainage, crews worked to build handline along Aspen Ranch. As temperatures dropped and wind decreased, firefighters began strategic firing operations to remove excess vegetation to starve the main fire of fuel as it moves toward FR 412. Firefighters brought fire down from the Pacheco Fire scar south around tribal trust lands, connected into the handline below Aspen Ranch, and burned west toward the head of the fire. Firefighters are now looking for opportunities to limit impacts to FR 102 as the fire progresses further south.

Weather: Temperatures today will continue to be well above normal. Scattered showers and dry thunderstorms are expected to develop this afternoon along the high terrain, bringing the threat of gusty outflow winds.

Safety: Health and safety of firefighters and the public is the first priority. Firefighters are conducting operations under protocols to mitigate the risk of COVID-19. Members of the public should stay away from fire operations and staging areas, including the Nambe Reservoir and the Rio en Medio (#163), Viejo (#179), Borrego (#150), Nambe (#160), and Capulin (#158) Trails on the Santa Fe National Forest.

Smoke: Smoke from the Medio Fire is likely to be visible from Santa Fe and surrounding communities as well as along the I-25 and US-285 corridors. Smoke-sensitive individuals and people with respiratory problems or heart disease are encouraged to take precautionary measures. Information on air quality and protecting your health can be found at


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Phone: 505-663-6334

Hours: 8 am – 8 pm



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